Odisha to grow potato in 20,000 hectares

Bhubaneswar, Sep 24 (IANS) Odisha, which depends on potato import on neighbour West Bengal, has set a target of growing potato in 20,000 hectares during the Rabi season this year, officials said on Thursday.

The directorate of horticulture would take up potato cultivation in 5,000 hectares under the cold storage centric potato incentivisation programme with financial assistance to potato growers under the Rashitrya Krishi Vikas Yojana, said an official of the agriculture department.

The state government has directed public sector seed procuring agencies like the National Seeds Corporation and the National Horticultural Research and Development Foundation to take up seed production over 1,420 hectares.

The seed produced will be utilised during Kharif and Rabi in 2016-17.

The government has decided to implement the ‘Potato Mission’ from 2015-16 to make the state self-sufficient in potato production and storage over a period of three years.

The government has also decided to create a buffer stock of 40,000 tonnes of potato in 2015 to deal with short-term scarcity.

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